As a shortage of skilled workers continues to plague the manufacturing industry, one Madison-based startup is looking to close the gap with its online labor marketplace.

FactoryFix is a recruiting and hiring platform that connects manufacturers to skilled workers. The platform’s purpose is two-fold: it streamlines the manufacturing hiring process by vetting candidates, providing salary insights, generating job listings, and other tools to help fill the applicant pipeline. And it allows job seekers to create profiles to better match with employers that fit their skillsets and maximizes their earning potential.

The result is an onboarding process that is faster and more affordable than hiring through a traditional staffing agency—something that could cost roughly 20-25% of an employee’s annual salary—and eliminates the nuisance of handling hiring in-house, explains the company’s founder and CEO, Patrick O’Rahilly.

Addressing the skills gap remains a priority for manufacturers. Even as Covid concerns continue to slow productivity, most plants are operational—and more than 50% of manufacturing leaders citied hiring as a top concern over the next 12 to 18 months, according to the National Association of Manufacturers Outlook Survey for the second quarter of 2020.

“One of the things we’ve done is changed the business model,” O’Rahilly says by phone. “Your traditional agency is pretty expensive and is often temp-to-hire. That’s tough in today’s environment. By eliminating that big headhunting fee, we’re pushing companies to hire directly, and that’s what the workers want, too.” Read the full story here.